Mac Miller at America's Backyard 5/14
Just because Asher Roth hasn't been lazily rapping about college lately doesn't mean his influence on an entire wing of suburban rap has dissipated. It's quite the opposite, in fact. In Roth's wake, an entire subgenre of so-called "frat rap" is on the rise, and no amount of hip-hop purist hand-wringing will get rid of it. Take Mac Miller, a 19-year-old Pittsburgh native who appeared out of nowhere sometime in the past year, released some internet-popular mixtapes, and made it into this year's edition of XXL's reputation-making annual "Freshman Class." By his musical accounts, Miller's had it easy — sample song titles have included "Senior Skip Day," "Nikes on My Feet," and "Kool Aid and Frozen Pizza." Still, his beat selection and laid-back flow is closer to golden-era boom-bap than that of many other new rappers. It's easy to see the appeal for kids who went through high school blasting a Tribe Called Quest and puffing L's in SUVs purchased by their parents. You wanted total rap integration, you got it.
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